Contest Dates

Gold Line Press is accepting manuscripts for its 2023 contest from July 15 until September 15, 2023.

We invite submissions of nonfiction, fiction, and poetry that are chapbook-length as a key element of their concept. Our judges this year are Marisa (Mac) Crane in fiction, Kemi Alabi in poetry, and Edgar Gomez in Nonfiction.

Length: 20-30 pages of poetry, 7500-15000 words of prose.
Deadline: September 15, 2023.

Gold Line Press is affiliated with the PhD in Creative Writing & Literature Program at the University of Southern California.

    • Multiple submissions are acceptable as long as they are submitted separately with separate entry fees.
    • Simultaneous submissions are fine, but please be sure to withdraw your submission via Submittable if your work is accepted elsewhere.
    • Please update any changes in contact information via your profile on Submittable.
    • No revisions to submitted manuscripts will be considered. The author of the winning manuscript will work with Gold Line’s editorial staff to make revisions prior to publication.
    • Colleagues and current or former students of this year’s judges — as well as current students of English or Creative Writing at the University of Southern California and recent alumni (graduating years 2018 to present) — are not eligible to submit.
    • In December 2023 we will announce contest results by email, as well as on the Gold Line Press site. The winning chapbooks will be published in the fall of the following year.
    • Each winner receives $750, publication of their perfect-bound chapbook with ISBN, and 50 contributor copies. Gold Line Press sends out 30 copies on behalf of winners for review. Winners can purchase additional copies of their chapbooks at cost. The chapbook is cataloged in the Library of Congress and distributed through Small Press Distribution.
    • We welcome a wide range of styles and approaches. In past years, Gold Line Press has published both writing that is innovative or genre-crossing, and writing with that is more traditionally structured. While we have a particular interest in promoting the work of emerging writers, we welcome and celebrate submissions from writers in any stage of their career who are creating innovative and resonant chapbook-length texts.
    • We seek works of prose that are purposefully planned as chapbooks: novellettes, carefully curated collections of vignettes, short stories, essays, or other projects that take the chapbook format as an instrumental element of their design. Excerpts of novels or short story/essay collections should form a sustained and individual project in their foreshortened form. For poets, we also recommend that manuscripts be cohesive and self-contained in the chapbook length.
    • Manuscripts must be 20-30 pages in length for poetry entries, and 7,500-15,000 words for fiction and nonfiction entries (not including the title page and table of contents). Please submit your manuscript typed in font such as Times New Roman or Arial. Prose manuscripts should be double-spaced.
    • Manuscripts should be paginated with a table of contents at the beginning, unless the form of the book does not warrant it.
    • Individual poems/short stories/essays may have been previously published, but the work as a whole must be original and unpublished.
    • The manuscript must be in English. Translations are ineligible.
    • The $15 entry fee includes a copy of the winning chapbook in your genre.
    • The submission fee is waived for writers of color, indigenous writers, and writers facing financial hardship.
    • All manuscripts must be received by SEPTEMBER 15, 2023 via Submittable.
    • We do not accept hard copy submissions. Any manuscripts and checks we receive in the mail will be shredded and recycled without being read.
  • Each genre editor will review all submissions and will select a finalist pool, in conversation with the Editor-in-Chief and the rest of hte editorial board. Finalist manuscripts will be sent to the judges, who will select the winning manuscript to receive $750 and publication. All finalists will be listed on the Gold Line Press website and social media pages. The judge may request to see additional manuscripts if necessary. The judge is not permitted to choose manuscripts that present a conflict of interest.

    Gold Line Press, as a member of the CLMP, abides by its Code of Ethics:

    The Council of Literary Magazines and Presses’ community of independent literary publishers believes that ethical contests serve our shared goal: to connect writers and readers by publishing exceptional writing. We believe that intent to act ethically, clarity of guidelines, and transparency of process form the foundation of an ethical contest. To that end, we agree to 1) conduct our contests as ethically as possible and to address any unethical behavior on the part of our staff, editors, or judges; 2) to provide clear and specific contest guidelines — defining conflict of interest for all parties involved; and 3) to make the mechanics of our selection process available to the public. This Code recognizes that different contest models produce different results, but that each model can be run ethically. We have adopted this Code to reinforce our integrity and dedication as a publishing community and to ensure that our contests contribute to a vibrant literary heritage.

Contact Details


Gold Line Press & Ricochet Editions

c/o Ph.D. in Creative Writing & Literature

3501 Trousdale Parkway, THH 431

Los Angeles, CA  90089-0354


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